Loc 300 – Never Surrender
An avid music author, and hip-hop aficionado, LOC 300 believes that music is a form of therapy that can help people of all ages. He started ND Music Group, LLC (NDMG) in 2007 after witnessing the numerous challenges, and negative influences that independent artists face in the entertainment industry. “300” uses NDMG as a platform to educate artists and to help them achieve success as a business/brand.
Growing up in an environment subject to gang rules, and hustling, he learned the side of life that forces a person into the “protect yourself at all costs” mentality. For this, he commits time to helping underprivileged and troubled youth. Whenever possible, he is supporting the aspirations of the youth via his ND Youth Program. He has an undeniable gift for reaching children that others simply cannot.
In 2013, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Entertainment Business Management from Full Sail University. His passion for music, and hard work earned him the title of Valedictorian and 5 leadership awards. LOC 300 promotes self-improvement and growth through education. His push is evident in the lives of his four sons who are academically, athletically, and artistically inclined.
HipHopLead- Loc 300 is an interesting name. For starts where did the name come from?
Loc 300- Loc was a nickname given to me by my neighborhood as a youth in Kalamazoo, MI. My cousin Krazy in Indianapolis, IN started calling me 300 as in the 300 Spartans. I was known to stand my ground when outnumbered and to come out on top. It didn’t matter how many people came to war with me… 2 or 20. I never backed down from a fight or challenge.HipHopLead- For those that don’t know where are you officially reppin?
Loc 300- I’m from the mid-west (Michigan and Indiana) so naturally I’m going to pay homage to the states that raised me. I live on the east coast, in the DMV (DC MD and VA). I’ve had the pleasure to perform and work in/with many of the venues and artists in the area. I’m a loyal person so I rep for DMV, Indiana and Michigan. I also have LOVE for the West Coast.
HipHopLead- Before we dive into the label you started and run, lets be clear. Are you focusing on being an Emcee and Producer more than the CEO?
Loc 300- I focus on the full package. Music and entertainment are in my blood. Between my business partner Sweets and I, we make the machine go. This is my season. I’m very committed to my music, so we started focusing on the Loc 300 brand. The best way to help people to succeed is to walk through the steps of success. People respect those who can relate to them, not just talk at them.
HipHopLead- We peeped out your new Joey Loax produced single for “Touch” on your Threehun.com website. For starts it was very deep, insightful and catchy. How did that song about?
Loc 300- Sex is prominent in our culture and I know more than enough people who have either been cheated on, or cheated with someone’s partner on the low. I felt that it was a valid topic. Joey Loax’s track swayed the feel of the topic. When I reached out to West Coast Legend Kokane for the hook, he nailed it.
HipHopLead- In the track u were spitting some slick lines about a fast female with a nympho type sex drive (laughs). Was this track based off reality or pure imagination?
Loc 300- This track was based on reality. Past experience was definitely a driving force behind the song Touch. Not every woman is looking for a boyfriend or a husband. Some really successful and powerful women just need a release, not a relationship.
Buy single here- https://itunes.apple.com/album/id886700698
HipHopLead- Lets talk about your come up. Who were your influences to get into music?
Loc 300- My whole family loves music so I came up listening to many different genres of music. My mom played the piano as a kid. She knows music like none other. Of course hip-hop stuck with me. I grew up listening to West Coast hip-hop. I like east coast Hip Hop, but there was something about the west coast that drew me in early. I listened to NWA, Tupac, E-40, Too Short, Snoop and the Dogg Pound, Kokane and many more. On the East Coast DMX and Ruff Ryders, Jay-Z, Nas, Slick Rick, Busta Rhymes, Public Enemy the Wu to name a few. I love music
HipHopLead- Being from an era and region that reps realness, are you happy with the current artists leading the way?
Loc 300- The state of Hip Hop used to bother me until I realized that everyone has to live his or her own life. People make music to entertain, so whatever story they are telling is cool as long as it is entertaining and has a nice vibe to it. I look at it like watching a movie or a sit-com. People say they are real and will mislead you in heartbeat. There are only a handful of people who are real anyway. I’m not going to be bent out of shape because of what other people do. I can only keep it real. In that area, I’ll leave the acting to the actors (laughs). But the key is to understand that it is entertainment.
HipHopLead- On your track “Bottles Freestyle” it def sounded relevant to the ills of society so many people are going through. It was catchy and had us vibing out hard on top of that. You and your groups lyrics on the track were pretty revealing. It seemed like you were talking about moving yourself up in this world and in this music game. With that said what made you guys just lose it and vent so vividly?
Loc 300- We got to the point where we just needed to vent and the “Bottles Freestyle” was the perfect tool. We consumed and just let loose on the mic. Tracks don’t press charges. Shout out to the Skutty Squad.
HipHopLead- A lot of people say the majority of the rappers in the South are not lyrical. Especially New York artists say that. It seems you embraced that sound a lot, but kept the substance in tack, with your music. Being from the DMV now which type of sound do you gravitate towards being in the middle of the coast?
Loc 300- I listen to the track and respond to the track. I can be lyrical, but if the track needs more feeling or energy than lyrics that’s what I’ll do. My main attribute as an emcee is providing energy to a track. My goal is to make the best music possible, so diversity is what feeds the audience.
HipHopLead- What projects have you released to date?
Get20 Union-From Heaven 2 Hell
Get20 Union- What’s That?
Get20 Union-Loud Session Vol 1 (first ones free)
ND Music Group-Loud Sessions Vol 2
Loc 300 solo project (Touch single)
A few songs with the Skutty Squad that are on the Digital Dynasty Mixtape Series.
HipHopLead- Which is your favorite and why?
Loc 300- My favorites would be my first solo single. My album was due to drop a few years ago. I put it on hold, because I was working heavily on the Get20 Union projects. My team members started doing solo projects so I took time out from Get20 Union to focus on my music. I had the opportunity to film in Las Vegas with Kokane, which really expanded my network on the West Coast. When you grind for everyone else, it is admirable. But when you put in work for yourself, there is no better feeling when you reach the finish line.
HipHopLead- Any features on either project worth mentioning?
Loc 300- Oh Yea Definitely! Kokane is featured on my single Touch produced by Joey Loax. Dirty Boy of DBMG is featured on my next single Geekin’ produced by Joe Blast from the Heat Makers. Skutty Squad will be featured on my single Boss Shawty and also on the remix of Fresh Than produced by Van Taylor.
HipHopLead- What’s your favorite song off that project?
Loc 300- It’s a tie between Geekin’ and Fresh. Both let out the beast in me. Stay tuned cause they are dropping real soon.
HipHopLead- How would you describe your style of hip-hop?
Loc 300- My hip-hop style is high energy and rugged. I am a storyteller with the ability to stack meanings to make complex songs that peak interest.
HipHopLead- Lets talk about ND Music Group, LLC (NDMG). It’s been 7 years since you kicked the label off. Since its launch how you have you and your brand grown?
Loc 300- I’ve become serious with my company. We are too futuristic to be simply a label. We teach artists how to become a brand, and a business. I know what I’m looking for in an artist. I know how to develop an artist, and my network is much larger than when I first started.
We developed the service mark, “Expand your brand ND right direction.” Sweets and I really care about the artists that work with NDMG. We nuture, and look for the people who are willing to work and invest in themselves.
HipHopLead- Other than being a record label what other services does ND offer?
Loc 300- The services NDMG offers to artist are:
Brand Expansion and Promotion
HipHopLead- Unlike most people in the music game you actually went to school for it. How would you say that graduating Full Sail has broadened your horizons in this music game?
Loc 300- Full Sail helped me understand how all parts of the entertainment industry work together. The courses also helped me to understand the functions of those parts. Some artists don’t know the difference between a showcase and an open mic. Full Sail also emphasized the business ethics and corporate social responsibility that comes along with being a business leader in the entertainment industry. Plus, you would be surprised on how many people who graduated from Full Sail and are currently valid in the industry.
HipHopLead- Lets go back to your child hood. Has the game changed for the worst or better in your opinion?
Loc 300- The game has changed for the worst, in my opinion. The music industry used to have money. People would pay at least $9.99-12.99 for a CD with their favorite song on it, unless the single was available which would cost 1.99-4.99. Now you can download music for free or pay $1 per song. This means if a song sold million copies there is anywhere from 1 to 11 million missing from the game. The hip-hop industry is just a shell of what it used to be. Look up how many major record labels have been shut down and had to merge with another company to survive. But, there is a lot more opportunity for the independent artist to make money if he/she has the money to create, promote, and sustain the campaign.
HipHopLead- What is a typical day like for Loc 300?
Loc 300- Wake up and put on my force field to shield me from the day-to-day stress. Eat, stretch, and then go play basketball with my kids. Come home shower. Eat, then put on my force field again and check my social media and email. Then preview beats, do my lyrical Olympics (this is where I record my freestyle over different tracks). Pick a beat write a song. Call SKN or Van go to the studio, put on my force field again and again while I kick it with the Skutty Squad and fill in features. Sometimes I’ll go to the club. Sometimes I chill with Sweets. It just depends on my mood. I’m usually promoting throughout the day and back and fourth with Sweets about business endeavors and plans. I’m all about my family music business. All are very important to me.
Hiphoplead- Other then music what do you do to make that paper?
Loc 300- I grind period! We have a day care in Illinois. We also have a contract company. I use my skills to keep the bills paid.
Here at HipHopLead.com we like to ask our features some questions that really are out of the norm. We do this because it gives the fans a broader outlook on you. So lets get it cracking ….
HipHopLead- What do you think about white rappers like Macklemore and Iggy getting the mainstream platform and awards nowerdays?
Loc 300- I think diversity is good. Diversity keeps our culture alive. Like Ray Charles making a hit country record. Look at Hootie winning awards in rock, pop and alternative music. Sometimes I think hip-hop artists, including myself, sell so much dope and kill so much in our music that we write ourselves out of opportunities. At the same time, it seems as if that’s the type of music that record labels look for in our “real hip-hop artists”. The artist stays in so much personal drama that when the artist goes to jail over something stupid the system capitalizes 3 times: off the music, the drama, and the work the individual does in jail.
HipHopLead- Who is baddest chick in the game you would want to “TOUCH”?
Loc 300- I’m gonna have to go with Alicia Keys. She’s sexy, talented, and smart. Triple threat!
HipHopLead- If you had the power to resurrect any dead emcee from the past who would it be?
Loc 300- Big L or Tupac.
HipHopLead- Tell us a hidden talent Loc has?
Loc 300- Loc 300 is a voice actor. Over the years I have developed various characters, and incorporate them. I am actually going to move into professional voice acting over the next few months.
HiphopLead- Lebron went back to Cleveland, what’s your prediction for next year?
Loc 300- I like the Wizards out of the East. Cleveland does not have enough size to compete with the West. San Antonio still has the best chance to win the west, and Pop is too good of a coach.
Back To The Norm…….
HipHopLead- Name 1 song you’ve done that will have the HipHopLead.com viewers hooked!?
Loc 300- Fresh than is going to be the one…..and then of course the Skutty Squad Remix.
HipHopLead- Thanks for hollering at us and in closing give any shoutouts….links to your sites….F.U.’S or whatevers clever
Loc 300- Thank you to @ND_Sweets, Just Jay and the Hype Magazine, Skutty Squad, Get20 Union, Round Table Klick, Godfather, Boone Pratt, Will Po, DBMG, Kokane, Joey Loax, The Advocate, The DMV, K-Zoo, Nap-Town, C-Note, Shawn-O, Bam, my mother, both my Pops (Kenny and Andrew) Renegade (Wes and Neek) it so many people to name my Big Sister OG Tray-Dog. I have nothing but respect for everyone around me if you know then you know it’s real. One
Label Website: www.ndmusicgroup.com